Romantic Novelists' Association

Press Release: The Romantic Novelists’ Association Honours Katie Fforde With Lifetime Achievement Award

14 February 2023

TUESDAY 14TH FEBRUARY 2023 We are delighted to announce that RNA President and bestselling author Katie Fforde is the recipient of the 2023 Lifetime Achievement Award, in recognition of her exceptional contribution to romantic fiction.

Jean Fullerton, RNA Chair, said, ‘The Lifetime Achievement Award is the highest accolade our organisation bestows and this year we are honoured to present it to bestselling author Katie Fforde. As President of the RNA, Katie is a wonderful ambassador for the organisation and has championed the romantic fiction genre for decades. Katie is loved and respected across the industry and by her readers around the world.’

Katie commented, ‘I am thrilled and delighted to receive this award. The RNA has been part of my life for nearly 40 years and so this is extra special.’

Katie is a #1 bestselling author and has sold over 4.5 million books in the UK alone. She lives in the beautiful Cotswold countryside with her family and is a true country girl at heart. Katie has been President of the Romantic Novelists’ Association since 2011 and founded the Katie Fforde Bursary to support aspiring authors. To many, she is the ‘Godmother of Romantic Fiction’.

It wasn’t until her children were a little older that Katie first started writing, after her mother gave her a writing kit for Christmas and insisted that she could make time if she really wanted to. Once she started she just couldn’t stop, and spent years trying to write her very own Mills & Boon. All in all, she wrote eight novels, either entirely or partially, before she finally accepted defeat and thought it just wasn’t going to happen.

It was only then, thanks to the Romantic Novelists’ Association, that Katie was introduced to a literary agent, who convinced her she could write something a bit bigger . . . and writing contemporary romantic fiction proved to be her true calling!

Katie’s debut novel Living Dangerously was snapped up by a publisher before she’d even finished writing it, and was published in 1995 – at the age of 42, 10 years after she first started trying, Katie was finally a published author. The story was inspired by much of Katie’s own life: her town, her job, her wardrobe, and even her elderly cat.

Since then, she’s written a further 29 novels, a collection of short stories and a Quick Read for The Reading Agency’s 2021 campaign. Her books have continued to top the bestseller charts through her almost 30-year career.

As someone who understands the struggles of years of rejection as a writer, Katie has always been a fantastic advocate and supporter of other aspiring and debut writers at the start of their careers. She credits the Romantic Novelists’ Association for helping her to finally launch her career and has been a member ever since. She was elected Chairman in 2009 and served until 2011, when she became the RNA’s fourth president – a position she has now held for over 10 years, helping countless romantic novelists achieve their writing dreams in the process. Throughout her career she has continually been generous with her time and advice, giving many writers the boost they needed to keep going.

The Katie Fforde Bursary supports aspiring romantic fiction authors. An annual RNA membership subscription is awarded, along with a place at the conference where there are opportunities to meet agents and other writers. Of the over 20 recipients of the bursary so far, almost all of them have gone on to subsequently secure publishing deals. Katie also sponsors the RNA’s Debut Romantic Novel Award. Locally, she works with and supports The Stroud Book Festival, and is the founder and sponsor of The Laurie Lee Prize for Writing.

Katie will be presented with her trophy at the RNA’s Romantic Novel Awards ceremony, which is being held at the Leonardo Royal Hotel London City, 8-14 Cooper’s Row, London EC3N 2BQ, on Monday 6th March 2023 at 6.30pm.


Katie Fforde will be taking part in the RNA’s 2023 mini virtual Lit Fest, held online today as part of the RNA Romance Reading Month which celebrates romantic fiction. She will join bestselling authors Milly Johnson and Julie Cohen on The Key to Writing Bestselling Romance panel at noon, hosted by Mills & Boon author Catherine Tinley.

Information about today’s other panels, plus many other activities planned for the remainder of Romance Reading Month, can be found on the RNA’s website:


The Lifetime Achievement Award is presented at the RNA’s discretion for an exceptional and long-standing contribution to romantic fiction, whether in the field of publishing, writing or supporting romantic fiction. There is no shortlist for this award.

The RNA’s first Lifetime Achievement Awards honoured Lucilla Andrews, Rosamund Pilcher and Mary Stewart at a glittering event in the Scottish Parliament in Edinburgh in August 2006. Other recipients include authors Maeve Binchy and Joanna Trollope, along with Karin Stoecker, former Editorial Director of Harlequin Mills & Boon.

Bestselling author Katie Fforde has been honoured with the Lifetime Achievement Award for her almost-30 year career as an author and for her dedication and service to the RNA.

The RNA also presents an Outstanding Achievement Award, in recognition of an extraordinary contribution to the field of romantic fiction.


Twitter – @KatieFforde

Instagram – @ffordekatie


  1. Living Dangerously (1995)
  2. The Rose Revived (1995)
  3. Wild Designs (1996)
  4. Stately Pursuits (1997)
  5. Life Skills (1999)
  6. Thyme Out (2000)
  7. Artistic Licence (2001)
  8. Highland Fling (2002)
  9. Paradise Fields (2003)
  10. Restoring Grace (2004)
  11. Flora’s Lot (2005)
  12. Practically Perfect (2006)
  13. Going Dutch (2007)
  14. Wedding Season (2008)
  15. Love Letters (2009)
  16. A Perfect Proposal (2010)
  17. Summer of Love (2011)
  18. Recipe for Love (2012)
  19. A French Affair (2013)
  20. The Perfect Match (2014)
  21. A Christmas Feast (2014)
  22. A Vintage Wedding (2015)
  23. A Summer at Sea (2016)
  24. A Secret Garden (2017)
  25. A Country Escape (2018)
  26. A Rose Petal Summer (2019)
  27. A Springtime Affair (2020)
  28. A Wedding in the Country (2021)
  29. A Wedding in Provence (2022)

Katie’s 30th novel – One Enchanted Evening (2023)

One Enchanted Evening by Katie Fforde will be published on 2nd March 2023 by Century, £16.99 in hardback.